Criminology and Criminal Justice Undergraduate Research

Current and Recent Undergraduate Research Projects

Dr. Alex Alvarez - Der Stümer Archives 

2013-2014: The Der Stümer Archives is comprised of the front-page cartoons that were a prominent feature of the Nazi newspaper of the same name.  While never the official newspaper of the Nazi Party, Der Stümer had a wide following in Germany.  Its appeal was rooted in its controversial, crude, and anti-Semitic nature.  One important feature of the Der Stümer were the cartoons included on almost every single front page.  Students in this undergraduate research project are trained in conducting qualitative content analysis and then work on analyzing these cartoons and coding them thematically. 

Dr. Lynn Jones

Dr. Jones has enjoyed working with undergraduate researchers on the following projects:

2013-2014: Keith Hullenaar enrolled in CCJ 485: Undergraduate Research for both semesters of the academic year to assist Dr. Jones on a Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) project related to the Department's junior-level writing course. This project investigated student perceptions and experiences in the writing course, including feelings of confidence and self-efficacy about their writing, the peer-review process in the course, and connections between writing and careers.  Keith honed his skills in coding qualitative narrative data, while also developing a strong understanding of the literature in this area. Keith successfully presented his findings with a poster entitled "Investigating Student Self-Efficacy Perceptions in a Criminal Justice Writing Course" at NAU's 2014 Undergraduate Research Symposium.  For more information about the symposium:  Dr. Jones and Keith expect to turn the poster and research project into an article for submission to either Teaching Sociology or Journal for Criminal Justice Education.

2004-2006: Ryan Saxby worked with Dr. Jones through CCJ 485: Undergraduate Research and also was funded with the NAU Hooper Undergraduate Research Award (HURA) for the project "An Investigation of Environmental Activism and Uses of the Law." Ryan interviewed a number of environmental and Native American activists about the fight to prevent the use of snowmaking at the Arizona Snowbowl ski resort in Flagstaff.  His research findings led to a paper and presentation in Berlin, Germany with "A Frenzy of Arguments and Goals: Movement Strategies Opposing Snowmaking at an Arizona Ski Resort."  Dr. Jones presented this work on Ryan's behalf at the Law and Society Association annual meeting at a panel sponsored by the Law and Social Movements international Collaborative Research Network (CRN).

2004-2005: Margaret Frola worked with Dr. Jones through CCJ 485: Undergraduate Research and was funded with the NAU Hooper Undergraduate Research Award (HURA) for the project "Student Sexual Assault: Awareness, Reporting, and Seeking Services by Off-Campus Students."  Margaret's undergraduate research experience at NAU paved the way for her master's degree in forensic psychology from another university, and she currently works as a consultant for Jury Behavior Research, Inc.  

2003-2004: Brooke Smith and Amanda White worked with Dr. Jones through CCJ 485: Undergraduate Research and received the NAU Hooper Undergraduate Research Award (HURA) for the project "A Study on Minority Sexual Assault and Rape Victimization on the Northern Arizona University Campus."  

Upcoming Undergraduate Research Opportunities Open to Application

Media Portrayals of Crime and Justice (Fall 2014-Spring 2015) - Dr. Stephani Williams 

This research study will allow students to participate in various stages (or all stages) of research assessing the impact of media portrayals of crime and justice on the viewing public.  Students have the option of enrolling for one semester, or for the full year project.  Depending on the length of involvement, students have the option of being involved in every stage of the research process:
  • creation of goals and research questions
  • literature review
  • selection of media clips to use in field interviews
  • training students on interview techniques
  • creating coding sheets
  • conducting field interviews
  • coding interviews
  • analyzing data
  • writing papers
  • presenting findings
Please view the application for further details and information about the this research opportunity.  If you have questions or seek additional information, please contact Dr. Williams at

Undergraduate Research Resources and Funding

NAU's University College Undergraduate Research Initiative 
Hooper Undergraduate Research Award encourages greater participation of undergraduate students from all disciplines in research, scholarly, and creative activities supervised by a faculty mentor. 
Interns-to-Scholars (I2S) program is a new pilot program designed to enable undergraduates, especially sophomores, to work as paid assistants on faculty scholarly, creative, or research projects in all disciplines.